So, at what point did you start believing this deflated football controversy? Were you home from an early Monday morning walk, expecting an easy MLK Day full of NFL highlights and entertaining Internet memes featuring various Patriots beating dead horses in Colts uniforms? Did you see the telltale question mark on the sports ticker, something like, “Pats Under Investigation?” when you first felt the elation of their AFC conquest sag a bit?

Did you not want to believe it? Do you yet?

Coach Bill Belichick’s subsequent meeting with the press offered no reassurance. He bookended answers with “We’ll do whatever the league asks us to do,” giving two separate “The first I heard of it was this morning,” responses. Nary a straightforward denial among them.

He did it. Of course he did. Because Bill Belichick – like most NFL coaches, to an extreme – is different from you and me.

Some with only a cursory understanding of these topics would say that Belichick ignores the rules. On the contrary, he obsesses over them. Think about his most consistent teacher over the years, his father. The man played professional football in 1941. Can you imagine the stories he could tell? Can you imagine what was thought of as “legal” for the 1940s Detroit Lions? Back then, considering the lack of protection, “helmet-to-helmet” resembled a head butt. Water breaks were for the weak. Just a completely different mindset of what was considered fair.

The younger Belichick knows the rules so well that he ensured quarterback/living B.C. statue Doug Flutie’s final play was a history-making drop kick for an extra point back in January 2006. At the time, very few knew whether a drop kick was still legal. Hell, not a lot of people knew what a drop kick was. Flutie became the first player to score a point by that method since Scooter McLean kicked for the Bears’ championship win in – surprise – 1941. (A fact Belichick knew, by the way: just read his post-game interview here.)

Imagine an SAT-type test involving NFL rules. Some multiple choice, some true/false, a couple of essays (haven’t taken the SAT in about 30 years, so apologies if it’s completely different now). He’d come out doing pretty well, right? Now imagine Roger Goodell taking the same test. Unless there’s a section on what cocktails to serve while sitting at the club waiting for the staff to service an owner’s yacht, hard to say ol’ Rog nails it.

That’s Belichick. He knows more than you. He knows he knows more than you. It seems he wants people to just leave him alone and let him do what he has been groomed to do since he watched game film with his dad as boy: to try to understand and prepare that much better than his opponent. And, in a sense, the rules makers and enforcers have become his opponents, too.

I mean, press conferences must feel like agony for this guy. The same questions, over and over, to people who don’t understand or have failed to put in the work to understand the game on the same level. At times, especially with the out-of-town media who show up week-to-week, it’s got to seem like he’s trying to explain Memento to someone who started watching near the end. It’s why, when he gets a question with specific historical context, he puts on his metaphorical suspenders and lectures about the history of the great game of football. It’s why, except at outdoor practices, he rarely sees sunlight during the season.

He wouldn’t have it any other way. His work is his fun. He’s not like you and me.

Make no mistake; these don’t qualify as excuses, just potential reasons. Belichick cheated. He knew the proper inflation for footballs, and – after watching his team put the ball on the ground three times the week before – he decided to soften the spheroids to make them easier to hold during a driving rainstorm.

“But you don’t know that,” you are saying. “You weren’t there. Maybe he knew nothing about it.” Do you actually believe Bill Belichick knew nothing about 11 footballs inflated two pounds less than required? Come on. You have to give him more credit than that.

So now fans must either turn a blind eye or, as WEEI.com’s Jerry Thornton does well in this piece regarding Eli Manning’s ball ritual (yup, sticking with that phrase), start playing the “everyone does it” card. It’s a strong card to play here: more and more examples have arisen of doctoring footballs, including a jocular on-air exchange between announcers Phil Simms and Jim Nantz regarding Aaron Rodgers’ preference for overinflated footballs and a piece on Super Bowl winner Brad Johnson having footballs doctored before the big game vs. Oakland.

(On that last one: Raiders fans get all up in arms over the Tuck Rule – an actual, albeit silly, rule – but they don’t go totally bat-guano over this? Pick your battles, Oakland fans!)

I can’t argue against the accusations of rampant hypocrisy in the NFL. Linebacker Ray Lewis used a banned substance to help him recover from a triceps injury during Baltimore’s championship run. The Seahawks had several players suspended due to PED use leading up to last year’s Super Bowl season. Were they cheating? Sure seems like it. Do we care? Not much, apparently.

Why should we? Goodell didn’t seem to care about taping defensive signals until he heard numerous complaints. He didn’t seem to care about brain injuries until it became a money issue via lawsuit. He didn’t seem to care about domestic abuse until video of a violent assault made its way onto the Internet for all to see. He made up punishments as he went along. Now he’ll have to do the same.

I’ll skip the joke about inflating the balls of NFL owners and head straight for the obvious: this was not an issue Goodell expected to deal with this week. That’s part of what gets Belichick into trouble: his understanding of the rules and his efforts at circumventing them make Goodell and the league higher-ups look bad. After all, what is the punishment? There’s mention of a minimum $25,000 fine. Goodell will increase that, because he’ll want to send a message. But by how much, and why? More work for him. More to hammer out and nail down before the Super holiday.

In any case, it doesn’t seem like Belichick will get the message Goodell wants to send. The coach will go back to the rule book, studying, deconstructing, looking for language that could potentially give him an advantage. The coach does this as well as anyone else in the league. It’s a fan’s choice whether to embrace this line of thinking or not. We know he didn’t need to tinker with air pressure to beat the Colts. We know he preps his players for on-field situations with awesome meticulousness. We can’t ignore his greatness. We can’t ignore his faults, either.

We know this about Bill Belichick: he has cheated; he will probably figure out a way to cheat again.

And, Heaven help me, I’ll be rooting for him.

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133 thoughts on “Understanding Belichick (Or Not, Really)

  1. “He made up punishments as he went along. Now he’ll have to do the same.”

    This is my issue. How do you trust the league to handle the investigation properly? There is absolutely no context for this situation. They have no stats or evidence of what the normal ball deflation is at halftime or at the end of the game. How often it happens? What happens in cold weather? in warm weather? The impact of using the balls in play? Now I am not saying they did not mess with the ball, but how do you expect the league to handle the investigation and rule a punishment with zero context? For example to they record the weight of each ball before they are stamped and accepted? Do they actually check the balls after every game to see normal deflation?

    And that is because the NFL doesn’t know what they are doing! They don’t release information through proper channels and then only leak out things. Already some of their good old networks reporters have been contradicted. We Don’t ‘ know if the issue was brought up in November? Or if they were planning all along to check at the half or if it was the linebacker and trainer who brought it to the leagues attention.

    These details matter!! And when the league so often just caves to media and public pressure, how do you expect them to actually run an investigation and rule? We used to think they knew everything but the reality is the NFL league office are not smart enough to handle the most simple of situations.

    1. “They don’t release information through proper channels and only leak out information through their trusted journalists.”

      If only the NFL had their own network where they could have a prime time special. Have the commissioner give an interview that reveals all his findings and answer any questions. Maybe even have fans submit questions. Could do that with any “gate” that comes up, but I’m asking too much.

      1. own network where they could have a prime time special.

        A ‘prime time special’ where a ‘decision’ is made… I can’t think of any four-letter networks that wouldn’t drool over that opportunity.

  2. Just watched the Belichick press conference. Based on what he didn’t say, it sounds like Brady is going to take the fall for this, which probably means less institutional punishment. So Brady gets fined and maybe suspended for a game or two next season. I can’t imagine he would be suspended for Super Bowl, but that would be an unbelievable story.

    1. If they punish Brady, they have to punish 31 other QB’s who have OPENLY ADMITTED they mess with footballs to their own specifications. Eli Manning, Aaron Rodgers, past Qbs like Matt Leinart and Jared Lorenzen. Brad Johnson. Rich Gannon. Check Twitter. Guys are showing no shame in saying they twist, shave, soak, rub, deflate, inflate footballs to their preference.

      This is a brilliant, calculated move. How can you punish OUR QB when the others do the same? What will come of this is next year ALL footballs, not just the kicking balls, will be in the sole possession of refs up until kickoff.

      1. There is only one team (or QB) under investigation, in which the footballs in question have been confiscated and examined. While it certainly is a league-wide practice to doctor the balls, they are not going to punish other players for comments to Phil Simms on how they like their footballs. Since this is common practice,that should minimize the penalty. But with Goodell, who knows?

  3. A 25K fine seems about right. There is cheating and there is “cheating”. Deflating balls seems on par with purposefully committing offensive holding, defensive pass interference, or taking PEDs. Definitely against the rules, and punishable but not a complete violation of the spirit and tradition of the game. So if the league can prove the Patriots did this, fine them and be done with it. If the league can’t prove anything they should drop this farce immediately.

  4. It’s sad that…again…the Patriots seemingly have tarnished their own reputation just before a game that no one will cheer them for should they win it. To the idiot affirmative-action sports media hack who suggested that the Patriots should forfeit this game: Take a walk into any sports book in Las Vegas and see what kind of reaction that idea gets.

  5. When discussing this PR mess with a friend of mine this morning two words kept coming up…proportionality and perspective. The fact that Bill Belichick had to go in front of a microphone this morning and pin something on his QB which flies in the face of everything he has ever done and said about “team” over the last 14 years all to avoid the perception that this is a team practice and therefore the possible taking of a draft pick really tells us how out of whack this whole situation has become.

    Riddle me this Batman…what is more egregious cheating…playing with a football that is under inflated by (according to BB) .3 psi (12.2psi rather than 12.5 PSI) or deliberately lining up a foot into the neutral zone in an attempt to get the QB one step faster? What is more egregious paying players to hurt opposing players or playing with a football that professional referees when touching it did not notice was under inflated? What is more egregious, playing with an under inflated football or standing up at a press conference and announcing to the world that you would gladly pay player x anything that he wants were he willing to sign with your team even though he is under contract with someone else?

    From the moment my kids could talk we taught them about proportionality…lies, white lies, fibs, stretching the truth, omitting facts etc. We have explained where things fall on that scale and what appropriate reaction from us as parents and what appropriate punishments they can expect for committing said acts. In this debate you have people (I refuse to call them adults) calling for draft picks to be taken away, for the Pats to be disqualified, for BB to be suspended for the year, and/or for Tom Brady to be suspended for 4 games (Ray Rice beat a woman and got two, T-Sizzle poured bleach on a woman and her child and got none). The media and football fans out side of NE have lost their collective minds over an attempt by a player (or an organization) to gain what amounts to a small almost imperceptible advantage.

    I made a post yesterday saying Roger Goodell should be fired and I reiterate it. For allowing this circus to go on this week he is the guilty party. For allowing the Pats to have to face this distraction he should be fired. For making me now write two posts about this topic he should be drawn, quartered and then fired. He has lost all sense of perspective. The Superbowl being played by two great teams should be the story. Giving Richard Sherman a microphone and let him talk should be the emphasis of week 1. Talking about Bob Kraft’s relationship with BB and Pete Carroll should be the top story of this weekend. Then the game should be the whole hype of next week (well that and some gratuitous Katy Perry pictures/sightings/tweets). Instead Goodell has made a mockery of the NFL because he can’t quickly and swiftly pass judgement on a seemingly inconsequential violation of the rules.

    What should have happened is this. The story breaks Sunday night in the Indy Star because Irsay leaks the story to Kravitz. By Monday Tom Brady should have given a press conference where he said “Prior to the game I was talking to the ball boy and I said I like the ball lighter…the ball boy took a little air out and then I said…perfect…we did not measure it with a gauge and for that I am sorry. I fully expect an envelop on Wednesday with a fine, per the rule. I am sorry this got out of hand and I can assure you we will take steps to make sure it never happens again”. Goodell then sends Brady a $50,000 fine and this is a non story…as it should be. In the mean time Goodell calls Irsay in and reads him the riot act for being a sore loser because the proper inflation of the balls did not make a 38 point difference in that game. he then tells him he is taking a 7th round pick from the colts for giving the league a black eye unnecessarily.

    1. Bravo! I posted this under another article a couple of days ago, but it’s worth posting again with regard to the incompetent, egomaniacal imbecile who calls himself the NFL Commissioner. I quote Leo Amery, Member of Parliament, from his House of Commons speech on May 7, 1940, when members were debating the removal of Chamberlain as Prime Minister. He said, regarding Mr. Chamberlain: “You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go.”
      If I were someone in the NFL owners’ club, after this latest public embarrassment, I’d stand up at the next league meeting and address the “Commish” with EXACTLY those words. (Should be Kraft for all of the grieft his buddy Roger has put him through, but that will never happen; they’re good friends afterall).

  6. I thought Gresh and Zo did a great job not only breaking down the BB presser and saying what they thought was plausible and what they didn’t buy…but then they moved ONTO THE GAME! Novel concept. It’s really going to be a G-D shame if they break up the best football show in town. Because you KNOW Felger and Mazz will spend 4 hours on both press conferences and how if you believe a word of it you’re a footie pajama Patriots honk. I think D&H&JT will go 50/50 breaking down the pressers and the game. Which is a better alternative, I guess.

    But it sure was nice to get in the car and hear Gresh talking about how Brady can exploit the Seahawks defense. Actual game talk. X’s and O’s. Beetle would go the Felger route and drag Zo into it, kicking and screaming, but drag him nontheless.

  7. Hate the article…Reeks of the same tired assumptions and speculation about the man from the very same media members who have clearly never understood him to begin with. The foundation of Belichick’s entire public identity has been painted by sports writers who know nothing about him. Then others add to it and so on and so on. They get away with it b/c he is so guarded and disinterested in all things media. Its been a fascinating thing to watch over the years. People have their opinions and despite how flawed those opinions may be, in time they evolved into unquestionable truth. The opinion here is that its not only plausible but entirely likely that Belichick knew nothing about this. People want to point to “spygate” as proof of Belichick’s character or lack thereof but the problem have such a limited understanding of what spygate was about and in the absence of clarity, they created their own storylines. Storylines designed to fit the false picture of Belichick that had already been in existence for some time.

    This whole controversy isn’t about footballs. its about spygate. Adding further complexity to the situation is that Spygate wasn’t even about spygate. The beginning traces all the way to the media’s perceptions about a man they simply don’t understand and their ability…no, correction, their J.O.B. to frame the stories for the public.

    The irony is everywhere. While Belichicks reputation has become someone who likes to push the envelope in manipulating the rules, that reputation was created by a sports media that likes to push the envelope in regards to ethics and honesty in manipulating public opinion towards whatever creative way they can frame their story to increase their readership or number of television appearances. The lies, half-truths, misunderstandings, and misperceptions have built a fortress of fallacies surround the public perception of Bill Belichick.

    If Chris Warner is going to write for this website, a website designed to illuminate all the idiosyncrasies within the Boston sports media…I for one think he needs to start bringing his “A game”. This article is an epic fail.

  8. Unless there’s a section on what cocktails to serve while sitting at the club waiting for the staff to service an owner’s yacht, hard to say ol’ Rog nails it.

    Peter King would be write there to reiterate Goodell’s complaints on the service in the next week’s MMQB, though.

    1. I’m just spitballing here, but does anyone find it ironic that Ron Borges, confirmed plagiarist, is allowed to attend Brady’s press conference and ask him questions about ethical behavior (in his usual, douche-baggish way, I might add)? Just sayin’

    2. The “voice of reason” who wrote on facebook that a listener of his show in Pittsburgh deserved to be blown up by predator drones because he wasn’t against firearm ownership.

      I’m not saying that people need assault rifles. But to suggest someone that advocates gun ownership should die? That’s over the line and flat out classless.

      And Benz isn’t even from Boston! Yes he was born in CT but that doesn’t mean jack.

    1. If it is conclusive to somebody that the Patriots are cheaters, it is not much of jump that they are liars to boot.

    2. If exonerated by the league, Brady should sue every media maggot that has accused him of lying, without any proof to back it up–that includes everyone down at the smear factory in Bristol.
      Eff You!!
      Bobby Knight was right: that profession is (maybe) one level above prostitution.

  9. I love it. Belichick comes out in no uncertain terms and says he had nothing to do with the condition of the balls. The media says he is lying and/or throwing Brady under the bus. Belichick can’t win and the media can’t lose.

  10. So the nuts and bolts of the outrage is all based on Chris Mortensen reporting that an unnamed league source confirms that the footballs were below league standards and were off as much as 2 PSI and this is considered fact and the whole world goes nuts. For 48 hours every news report has led with this story. People are going as far as saying the Patriots should be banned from the SB. BB should be fired. TB should be suspended. Again all because of Mortensen’s story. Today BB says he learned that he needs to account for a drop in PSI due to the temperature outside. He learned that going from 12.5 PSI at game time to 12.2 PSI later in the game means the football is no longer acceptable and he as to account for that. I found it curious that he would say that. I am wondering is that what the under inflated means to the NFL and this is why the NFL is investigating? However, did anyone follow up on that (not that he would answer). All I heard was the media shouting over each other in the hopes of getting their question asking if he knew about the under inflated footballs during the game answered. The media doesn’t care what the right story is and the fans are left with Borges making an appearance down at Gillete (How long has it been Ron? 5 years? 10?) or stuck hearing about columns like Rosenberg’s @ SI or Glazer reporting this was an NFL sting designed to catch the Patriots and then seeing Schefter report today that the NFL has nothing that proves anything! We the fans have no one left to trust.

    1. The pathetic footie-pajama-wearing Pats homer in me soooooo wants it to come out that Mortensen’s “2 psi” below regulations tweet was actually 0.2 psi below regulations, either because the league “source” lied to make the Pats look bad, Mortensen lied to make the Pats look bad and to whip up a further media frenzy, or Mortensen simply misunderstood what he was told. Wishful thinking, perhaps, but BB going out of his way to say “12.3 psi” today doesn’t seem like a random coincidence to me (this is Bill Belichick, after all). I hope it’s not.

      1. I was leaning towards 11 of 12 balls were under inflated — by a cumulative amount of 2 psi. Which works out to an average of .18 psi. The source? A custodian at the NFL offices.

  11. D’Qwell Jackson, allegedly the guy who put this thing in motion, according to the media jackels, says he didn’t know a thing about it. He kept the ball as a souvenir not as evidence.

    Adam Schefter says the NFL basically has zero evidence that anybody on the Pats tampered with the balls at all. But the media doesn’t care. They want blood. Facts and EVIDENCE be damned.

  12. Belichick is the Patriots franchise. Krafty Bob better stick by him. Let’s blame Jonathan Kraft for the PSI issue. Ban Jonathan for life! No more sitting next to Daddy!

      1. If BB were to be a free agent, over/under on teams going after him? I’ll open around 27. You’d have teams terminating their recently hired HCs trying to go after him.

  13. ESPN has apparently removed all content by Chris Mortensen with “leaks” from “NFL Sources”. Backtracking now?

    That, combined with Jackson, what other players are saying and have said, and what Brady and BB said yesterday has the media in a tailspin. Now it’s gone into “Brady vs Belichick” (at least on your local 6-10a) shows.

    With no real direction, though, this story has spun out of control and, while the Patriots may end up being found guilty of nothing, the damage is done to the franchise, the reputation of the coach and player(s) involved, and in preparation for the Super Bowl.

      1. I vote myself down. I see what you are saying now. The mort report is no longer a link on the espn site. All shortcuts don’t work. The only remaining article is the one he originally posted and it is accessible by searching for ‘mortensen’ on the espn site.

    1. I saw ESPN this morning and they were using the “11 or 12 balls” thing on the chryon. So even if proven totally false, it is now a permanent part of the discussion. Of course, there will be no retraction/correction (at least not a prominent one).
      It still worries me that the NFL is clearly dragging its feet on ending this mess. They obviously believe that it will help drive hype and ratings (which are already astronomical) for the Super Bowl.

  14. Phony gate has almost made me forget that I’ll be watching the last game of the season in 8 days. The AFC all star team versus the Seahawks. in the super bowl.

    In all these years I have never felt such pre super bowl fatigue no matter what I turn on their talking about phony gate.

    Yesterday I checked out the 2015 shed. Colts in Indy my score prediction for that game is 75 to 6.

  15. For the love of God, I need the Sox to trade for Hamels or Strasburg. Or Danny Ainge needs to fire Brad Stevens. Or Zdeno Chara needs to get arrested. I wish somebody would have the courage to put this story on the back burner until there’s a ruling.
    The current news cycle right now is pathetic.

  16. Peter King said it was tampered by a human. Well, a Few Good Men happened to be on last night, and to quote Tom Cruise, “And you have the proof of that right. Oh I’m sorry, you were absent the day they taught law in law school.” Unless the NFL has a direct link, a picture, something then the Patriots should accept nothing, not even a fine. Say the league tries to discipline the Pats anyway. If the Pats decided to pull an Al Davis and sue, they would win because in a real court the burden of proof is on the NFL.

    1. I would love for the Patriots to sue the league. From now on I hope instead of kissing his bum every chance he gets Kraft makes Goodell’s life difficult on every level.

      1. Look, I think this is all a bunch of nonsense and the media rush to judgment shows how unhinged these jerks are.

        However, can we stop with the posts on Robert Kraft going Al Davis on Goodell or that Goodell should be fired. The first ain’t going to happen and the second will only happen if 1) Goodell starts to make nice with the players; and/or 2) he doesn’t make money for the owners (including Kraft).

        1. I am not going to stop hoping. I am tired of our team letting people getting away with saying and doing whatever they want. For once I would like to see the Patriots defend themselves because I am tired of this non sense. Just agree to disagree ok.

      2. No. Sue the media outlets who are smearing them. The burden of proof for the plaintiff is very high in such cases, but part of the the court ruling(s) on being able to get away with ridiculing public figures in the media states that “absence of malice” must exist among the person or persons making the claims. Can anyone truly suggest with a straight face that there is no malicious intent among the media members in this case, or any other involving the Pats? The malicious intent is everywhere, including calling everyone in Foxboro a bunch of liars. Demand public apologies and then at least THREATEN lawsuits if no such apologies are offered (assuming, of course, the NFL says they found nothing incriminating). Someone has got to start taking a stand against these smear merchants in the press.

    2. You summarized where it sounds like things are. Plus, holes keep being pegged in the original story. Also, we’re going completely from a @MortReport story. While he’s been right more often than wrong, his “wrong” was a huge wrong (Ray Rice). Way too many inconsistencies now.

      There is also a @SharksOfVegas report out there kinda confirming this (they look legit but I have no clue if they are).

      How can you justify punishment if you can’t pin it on someone? Kinda matters if its a ball boy, Brady or BB. Goodell isn’t a court of law but would face legal backlash there.

    3. King has absolutely no proof of this. He’s just had it in for BB since Spygate when BB refused to give him an “exclusive” about it (at least that’s how I recall it). And, this is ESPN, which has been in full hyperventilation/hysteria mode over this for days. Their on-air personalities embarrassed themselves yesterday, even moreso than Wingo, Schleretch, et al, embarrassed themselves the day the Matt Walsh tapes were revealed in 2008 (and that was pretty damn bad, especially considering Schlereth won two Super Bowls playing for a team that cheated on the salary cap—twice). That network, and it’s internet product, are pure trash at this point. I wish Reiss would get a job somewhere else so that I never have to click on ESPN.com again.

  17. I don’t care what contrarian so-called Pats fans or media vipers say or do.

    I will enjoy the game no less than I would’ve without them trying to tear Belichick and Brady down, yet again.

    I win.

  18. So, this major league and grossly overblown s**t storm was all ignited due to a known pill-popping drunk owner calling a known booze-hound hack writer at midnight – and subsequently given more life by yet another known hack writer with a history of publishing seriously erroneous stories – yet the entire media ecosystem just simply accepts it as gospel and they all run wild with it? Is that it? Just checking.

    I hope all of them contract disfiguring STDs and live the rest of their miserable, pathetic existences eating discarded chicken fingers found in dumpsters behind fourth-rate Asian cuisine restaurants.

  19. Good lord. I came here hoping for some clear-minded, unbiased reporting unavailable elsewhere and someone named Chris Warner craps the bed. “He did it. Belichick cheated.” Just another cynical wannabe pseudo-journalist claiming to know what he has no chance of knowing. I give up!

    1. A big difference: he an offered opinion that BB did it, supported with a reasoned, factually correct, argument. I have zero problems with that type of column.

      1. Nonsense! He offered an opinion based on pure conjecture, nothing factual at all. You need to understand THAT “big difference.” No facts have come out of this fiasco, just mediots pontificating and passing premature judgment. It’s sickening.

        1. Ummm, no. It’s factual that Bill’s an obsessive football brat, that (likely) knows the rulebook better than any human alive, that BB had Flutie do the dropkick, that he knew the historical implications, etc. etc.,

          His basic premise: Bill knows, and cares about, everything football related seems reasonable enough to this reader.

          As to the cheating – fortunately, another explanation came along: http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/patriots/2015/01/23/deflategate-air-pressure-moist/22242609/

          1. BB is “an obsessive football brat”? Brat? You’re a disrespectful goofball. Anyway, BB’s presser today pretty much renders li’l Chris Warner’s tripe null and void. Perhaps you can share a smoke with him and commiserate. Don’t bother responding to me further, I don’t respect your opinion.

          2. You don’t get out much, huh? Ever heard of an “Army brat”? Any idea what it means? How about a “military brat”? Still need help connecting the dots?

    1. The NFL statement, to me, basically says,

      “Just relax, we are working hard at proving the Patriots are guilty and we will. Please give us time. Until then, please continue to whittle away at their reputation.”

  20. Bob Kraft doesn’t seem NESN-like where he wants to dictate what’s said on the airwaves about his team, but just listening to the opening of F+M over the past few days, I wouldn’t be pleased.

    It’s one thing to be some homer where a team can’t do no wrong.. but when half of the media in your town are looking to convict the team, that’s like a, “uhh what?”. I’d have to think that someone like Curran, while many might want to throw the homer label there, if there is convincing evidence, wouldn’t deny or make up excuses.

  21. From the sublime to the absurd. That is the only way I can define the NFL’s statement. The Pats won the freaking game by 38 points. When it was discovered the balls were under deflated and correctly inflated balls were put into play the team scored 28 points, 11 more than they had scored with the “deflated” balls. Indy still managed just 7. Yet a couple of lbs of PSI warrants an investigation led by a league vice president AND an OUTSIDE LAW FIRM. The league did not put this many resources into the Ben Rothlisberger Rape allegations, the Rae Carruth Murder allegations or the the Denver Bronco’s Cap manipulation case. I doubt Eddie Debartolo and his financial shenanigans were investigated this seriously. What about Junior Seau’s suicide which appears to have resulted from CTE. Was an outside law firm brought in to investigate?

    Can some adult stand up and put some perspective on this. CNN (I am sitting in public and do not have control of the TV) just broke in with a report that said the NFL confirms the footballs used by the pats in the first half of the AFC conference game were indeed under inflated.. Then they went back to discussing sanctions on Iran and inviting Bibi Netanyahu to speak to congress.

    People have lost their mind. Ex-players like Marc Brunell want Brady’s entire career tarnished and tossed out because of at most a few PSI which had no effect on the game. All because they are assigning an intent that is not there. The unbelievable part to me is that the NFL is allowing this to continue. I wonder if they want all this negative attention because they know it is going to boast ratings. I am willing to bet right now that this game surpasses the final episode of MASH as highest rated (by share) program of all time because lay people will tune in to watch a ref put a gauge in a ball assuring the “integrity” of the game.

    The NFL entrusted its brand to a lawyer. His whole training/education/work experience has been a lesson is protecting against liability and not doing the right thing. Well the chickens have come to roost. The NFL now has a controversy its can’t spin and in doing so is destroying the value of a franchise, the reputation of the greatest coach ever and the reputation of the greatest QB ever…all over something it can’t prove which was completely inconsequential. Goodall and company must be so proud.

    1. Reminds me of what Mark Cuban said.. they’re getting too big..

      Biggest thing for me right now is this:

      The NFL has leaked that it ‘tested all balls’ to Mort and PK. Pretty safe to say they wanted this out there.

      Did they? I have the feeling they didn’t but the NFL doesn’t want to admit incompetence here, even though this could also implicate the Patriots. They know that all teams/QBs “manipulate” balls to their own way, even if they’d fail the specs in the rulebook. NFL doesn’t want this because it shows their incompetent and could also affect QBs and offenses (their bellcows).

      If they want to stand here, would it hold up under some type of challenge? I have to imagine Kraft’s legal team would feast on that one.

      If they go there, it then means that there is someone on the sidelines that doctored the balls. Peter King alluded to this. First, with every fan having 1080p video capability, wouldn’t one be recording some kid on the sideline carefully going over each ball, sticking something into them? Video cameras also everywhere. Wouldn’t someone, who isn’t a Patriots employee, see this going on and inquire?

      So, unless some ball boy is about to fess up, in which case they could hit the org with a fine, but it wouldn’t placate the pitchforked public. I have to wonder that if the NFL takes this seriously, they want to hit more than a “rogue $10/hr college kid”.

      And, it’s been said about Brady not knowing: I’ll take him at his word. If it turns out there is evidence contradicting him, he just Palmeiro’d himself and ended all endorsements, all possibility to make millions more after football, etc. I don’t think Brady is this dumb at all.

      1. Stolen from a comment on the NFL press release:

        Assume that the game footballs were inflated in a 75 F degree locker room, then taken out to a playing field at a temperature of 50 degrees F. How much would the change in temperature decrease the pressure in the football?

        High school physics tells us that the ideal gas law PV=nRT applies.

        That is, pressure times volume is equal to the number of moles times the gas constant times the temperature of the gas (in degrees Kelvin). Thus, given a constant amount of air in the football and a negligible volume change, the pressure will obey P = nRT/V

        The change in pressure is thus proportional to the change in temperature,

        The 75 degree locker room has an absolute temperature of 297 K
        The 40 degree playing field has an absolute temperature of 283 K

        The change in temperature of 14 K will thus cause a drop in pressure of 14/297 = -4.7%.

        To translate this into a pressure change we must recall that football pressure is measured in gauge pressure, relative to the atmospheric pressure of 15 psi. So the absolute pressure within a football pumped to 13 psi is 13 +15 = 28psi absolute. The 4.7% drop applied to the absolute pressure gives a drop of 1.32 psi.

        Thus, the pressure within the football at game time will be only 13 -1.32 = 11.68 psi and thus well below regulation gauge pressure of 12.5-13.5psi.

        If they were just at 12.5psi to start they would be down by 1.3psi to 11.2 psi by game time. And of course, a little pressure is lost every time you stick a needle in to check the pressure. Some guy on TV did this calculation but I think he forgot about absolute pressure vs gauge pressure and underestimated it.

        It thus seems highly likely that the Patriots equipment manager checked all 12 balls in a warm locker room and they lost pressure merely by cooling off on the field.

        In addition, the cold rain would have accelerated the heat transfer out of the balls. Finally, if the indoor inflation air was very humid, there would be an additional loss of pressure due to water vapor condensation on the inside of the bladder as the temperature of the football dropped.

        1. What contradicts this is the leak (Mort and others) that they say only the Patriots balls were the leaky ones. 11 of 12, or all 12. Doesn’t matter. They’ve already made it known that it was only the Patriots balls that were under inflated.

          Moreover, they claim they tested all 24 balls after the game, and only the Patriots ones were the faulty ones.

          So, what you’re saying is valid but it would affect all.

          If it didn’t, someone obviously doctored with the balls after they were “checked”.

          Or, were they all checked properly before the game?

          It goes back to what I said above: Either they were not checked properly or someone did doctor only the Patriots balls. If they cannot find or get someone to admit to this, could they hit the org? They’ve done all but do t hat right now and the public will buy that just fine, but wouldn’t that start legal action if they can’t pin it on someone, unless its an organization fine?

          1. So the argument you are making is the one Felger makes. Well if it did not effect Indy’s balls then…

            It assumes Indy’s balls were filled at the same time to the same pressure in the same climate controlled room. I am sure that did not happen. But all this is irrelevant. The reason I posted what I posted is to show there is a perfectly reasonable scientific explanation for what happened to the Pats balls.

            The only fact not know is whether the NFL has actual evidence (video, photo, or maybe a text/email) of someone deliberately or institutionally doctoring the balls. Even then I think this is a non issue…punished by a fine only. To think it is worse shows zero sense of proportionality. Widespread prescription of narcotics to cover pain from serious injury is serious…something the NFL is accused of doing…yet… everyone admits the deflation did not effect the outcome of the game. Everyone admits at half time properly inflated balls were put back into circulation.

            In the end I think what happened is this. The Pats submitted balls filled in an 80 degree room. The ref (Walt Anderson I think), did not test them with a gauge instead he just squeezed them and they felt fine. At half time the Colts questioned the balls. The refs actually tested them at half time and swapped out the under deflated ones with correct ones. Problem solved as the Pats go on to kill Indy. On Sunday night Irsay feeds Kravitz the deflation story probably as a throw away to deflect attention from his team pooping their pants yet again against NE. Somewhere in there was probably a call from Baltimore telling the Colts that the Pats were using low air balls (think about that irony for a second…the Ravens helping the Colts of all teams). Once the story got out it took on a life of its own when the jaded lovers on ESPN started calling for firing squads, Asterix’s and a pound of flesh. That brings us to two press conferences where I think the principles uncomfortably told the truth…they really do not know what happened because…they don’t know what happened…because there is no grand conspiracy to play with a ball that is imperceptibly different.

            The NFL’s statement did nothing to help the situation. It just guaranteed it would continue on for the foreseeable future because again, the commish is a lawyer first and not a decision maker. It is a mess. For a while I thought it would effect my enjoyment of the game…but now I am pretty convinced that I will thoroughly enjoy watching the Pats trounce the Seahawks. The victory will be that much sweeter and the rest of the NFL can go to hell.

            Lastly, if I was Bob Kraft and my fellow owners continue to allow this type of treatment of my billion dollar asset I might seriously reconsider all I do for the league. Life is short…he is a potential second (trophy) wife he might prefer to spend time with.

  22. D’Quell Jackson has admitted that not only did he not complain about the weight of the ball, he didn’t notice a difference. He wanted the ball as a souvenir, which is why he held onto it. “Now, somehow, I’m in the middle of this.” That’s a quote from him.

  23. According to the Felgerites and so-called fans that mirror everything that he and his contrarian ilk have to say, if you’re a fan that just wants to, you know, ENJOY the damn games, than it’s the equivalent of allowing politicians, bankers and other corporate executives and big time mobsters to get away with high crimes and corruption.

    And to the trolls, no, finding out that the Broncos cheated the salary cap rules and the 49ers before them, did not have an affect on my ability to enjoy the games…

    1. As you say, I intend to enjoy the game and it is, after all, a game.

      What Felger and his ilk do not understand is their false analogies only make them sound stupid. As an example, comparing political and financial corruption to “cheating” in football is nonsense.

      The corruption on Wall Street caused the economy to crash in 2008 was catastrophic that adversely affected everyone. If someone in football “bends the rules” to win (and I don’t think that happened here) I would hardly call that catastrophic.

  24. Can’t some scribe/media jughead get Felger/Mazz to just lay their cards on the table: tell us once and for all” what do you think happened, who is to blame, what is the punishmnent? Stop this pathetic running around trolling everyone Take a stand for once

  25. It’s been said in other places, but I’m amazed how this entire situation has basically been the nuclear option from the media, NFL insiders, other teams, etc.

    There’s no coming back from this – the Boston media, from almost top to bottom, has essentially cut ties with the Patriots. I can’t see them having a relationship of any sort – yeah, press conferences with muddled answers, but nothing else.

    I wonder if Brady ends his WEEI deal? I’d be surprised if he didn’t – though I don’t know D+C’s take on all this.

    The rush to judgment and the absolutely batshit insane overreaction is no different than politics – this is the exact same freakshow that meant we had three years of babbling nonsense that Obama was born in Indonesia. So instead of talking about anything that matters, it’s just so much time wasted on extreme nonsense.

    My personal belief is that the Colts ratted out a fairly innocent equipment violation to get a day of laughs, and then some moron at the NFL said the league was “enraged,” and they basically created a firestorm that is now out of their control. Anything’s on the table because it’s impossible to predict what an absolutely incompetent cartel of Thanks Dad-Billionaires will think of to try to pull themselves out of this fiasco they created.

    I’m all done with the NFL, though…I had already given up on them with the Ray Rice disaster and I am never, ever, ever coming back. Like the Skynrd song goes – “Watergate does not bother me, does your conscience bother you?” It’s a joke and we’re jokes if we think the NFL is something to take seriously anymore.

    1. WEEI and the Patriots have a deal for Patriots’ Monday and Friday. Not sure how much it would cost to cut that contract short.

      The last few days on WEEI were a classic case of cover your a$$. D&C sympathized with Brady and trashed BB. D&H were cool with BB and said Brady may have more answers to give. No real surprises.

  26. Anybody see that stupid, arrogant SOB Borges on CSNNE? Scoffing at the idea that Brady couldn’t tell the difference between the ball inflation? ESPN Sports Science said the difference is literally the difference of a DOLLAR BILL. He makes it sound like the difference is between a medicine ball and a wad of cookie dough.

    And he says “So D’Qwell Jackson could tell the moment he intercepted it, but Brady couldn’t?” No you j@ck@ss!! Jackson never said that. He said the opposite of that.

    Borges, Felger, and Mazz make me want to puke. Those three make me want to just remove sports completely from my life.

    1. Like I said: confirmed plagiarist questions Tom Brady’s ethics and, worse yet, has no remorse about it (then again, he’s never shown an ounce of remorse or expressed any contrition about plagiarizing either–he’s simply tried to play the victim card by saying he was “screwed over” by certain people). Unprofessional, dishonest, miserable, agenda-driven hack. End of story.

        1. Yup, and then accuses said geezer of “milking that thing for years” (that is, his handicap, as if it was made up or something) after the guy called him out for attacking “a cripple.”

    2. Stooge said, “… Borges, Felger, and Mazz make me want to … just remove sports completely from my life.”

      Or, as an alternative, you could, you know, remove those three from your life? Cool, huh? Trust me – I’ve done it. It works (but it’s only a start – the list is long!)

  27. How much of the over the top outrage is driven by the fact that the Patriots have made fools of so many of these journalists? Even before the Colts game a lot of media critics, including this site, were already dredging up the embarassing Week 4 era predictions about Brady’s demise, the “disastrous” Mankins trade, the unwillingness to spend to be competitive like the Broncos, etc. Once again Belichick and Brady have made all these pundits look like complete uninformed idiots, so I guess I can’t be surprised by the relish with which these “journalists” are trying to turn the tables.

  28. Can someone explain why every story (Borges for example) comes at this whole issue from the thesis that Bob Kraft is the “NFL’s CLASSIEST OWNER!!!” as if that absolves him from everything.

    Not questioning guilt or innocence or whatever, but IF this was a true incident, why wouldn’t Kraft be as much/more culpable than anybody else. I mean, the buck stops with the BUCK right? And Kraft is the one spending the bucks – is he some deluded old man who doesn’t know what he’s getting for his millions of dollars?

    Only in the NFL’s ass-backwards world could billionaires be out-of-the-loop absentee bumpkins who write checks without any knowledge or awareness.

    Not to go all political, but the whole Benghazi!!! nonsense was built on the idea that Obama was personally involved in decisionmaking…so I’m not sure why Kraft is being completely excused for everything that’s going on. He is the owner, right? He’s the chief moneymaker in this whole enterprise? So the one with the biggest motivation to make sure the team wins is him.

    Again – not talking about guilt/innocence, but why the “buck” isn’t actually stopping with the real buck. The buck seems to be stopping at an employee – and that’s not how it’s supposed to work, is it?

    1. Without getting all personal…this is just a moronic premise. The idea that the owner would be involved with the preparation of footballs is beyond dumb. The idea that this incident has become a referendum on good versus evil while dragging Kraft’s personal and professional reputations through the mud tells me that perspectives are so out of whack I seriously have to wonder the people opining on this topic look out the window and see a green sky because they are living in a different universe.

      The buck does not stop with Bob Kraft because he is the victim here. He can’t micro manage everything. He is not supposed to. He trusts his people. At best his people let him down by committing a ridiculously minor infraction of an inconsequential rule that had zero effect on the game; at worst the gross incompetency of the referee in charge of checking and certifying the balls has brought untold angst and character assassinations so vicious you would think members of the Patriots organization had been running an organized crime syndicate specializing in Child Pornography.

      I will ask the question again…what is worse…under inflating the balls by an imperceptible amount of air or deliberately lining up in the neutral zone in a attempt to get a jump on the play or deliberately interfering with a player down field because you would rather the penalty then giving up the points.

      You have gotten sucked in by the sycophant media that somehow has convinced itself that an organization as successful as the Patriots must be doing something unethical, that Bill Belichick has no sense of honor, that Tom Brady is a fraud and that Bob Kraft is the mastermind of all this. Don’t believe any of it. Pettiness, thin skinned wannabes and outright jealousy are driving a narrative the commissioner of the NFL is too feeble to handle and too stupid to have foreseen.

      This story is not about Bob Kraft. Dragging him into it only serves the agenda of those too who are so narrow-minded that they want to destroy someone whose biggest crime is success.

      1. Haha – you implied I’m a moron in the first line, so it’s obviously personal. And apparently I’ve gotten “SUCKED IN BY THE SYCOPHANT MEDIA!!!!” when it’s the media I actually have a problem with. We agree – the NFL is incompetent, the commissioner is a moron, the media is horrible. I’m using their excuse-making for Kraft as my POINT, not my actual belief.

        All kidding aside, the media wants to have it both ways – Belichick is an evil genuis, and Kraft is a deluded, honorable bumpkin.

        If Kraft isn’t responsible – fine. But obviously Bill isn’t wandering around deflating balls. So he’s not responsible. Brady isn’t deflating balls, so he’s not responsible.

        And a ballboy making $10 an hour doesn’t make decisions, so they’re not responsible.

        So nobody’s responsible, fine. Move on.

        Personally, I think the refs probably screwed it up at the start and the NFL is chasing their tale because they’re incompetent.

        I’m not trying to drag Kraft in – but I am blaming the media for saying “the buck stops here!” No, the buck stops where the buck stops. At the guy who writes the check and has the biggest financial investment in the operation. They just don’t like Bill B. so that makes him their target. I think it’s despicable.

        The story can be about whatever and whoever – if you think a comment on a website is an ‘agenda’ than you’re a little more conspiracy-minded than I guess I assumed you are? Nothing personal.

          1. So I read Bob’s missive and and it was another is a long line of narratives that make the Patriots guilty of something nefarious in Spygate. If media members don’t understand and more importantly are still unable to communicate to the general public how what the Patriots were guilty of did not give them any advantage…rather they were punished not for the offense but because they disobeyed the league directive…that was what got them punished. Had the camera been placed 10 feet further back there was no offense.

            The anger the rest of the NFL community has for the Pats over “spygate” and the lack of suitable outcome…Kraft not firing the media antagonist Bill Belichick…is as absurd as the whole deflategate tidal wave. Ryan who used to be quite good misses this simple point completely.

            At this point the rest of the country has lost their collective minds. NE fans should just ignore any noise because there no longer is any rational talk when discussing this team. Their two huge crimes were taping opposing signals for future use (something most teams did) from the field level rather than than above the bench and under inflating a football by 2PSI which had no perceptible difference in a game the team won by 38 points. If these incidents are more troubling than Baltimore employing a murderer and 2 domestic violence practitioners or Seattle have 10 players who failed PED test on their way to the SB last year or the Jets who openly tampered with Darelle Revis then there is no rational thinking left in America.

          2. Boy, you read it a lot differently than I did.

            Look, obviously somebody deflated these stupid balls, maybe on purpose, maybe through blundering, maybe because the refs didn’t properly check them – but I think we agree when we say “so what?” It’s like a pitcher throwing a spitball – good for you, if you can get away with it. But it doesn’t actually MATTER. This should have been a day-long story of semi-serious “there they go again” stories about gamesmanship.

            It doesn’t matter to compare to Baltimore’s players, or any other scandal – although it goes to the NFL’s inconsistency and general ineptitude. If you get into the “we’re not as bad as they are!” debate then you’ve lost the argument. As for “Spygate,” the NFL did punish them, so whatever. I guess there was a violation. We can’t wish there wasn’t. There was. Stupid? Sure, but it happened.

            But Ryan’s main point – as least as I read it – is this “deflating” shouldn’t matter, and wouldn’t matter if the situation were reversed. If the Colts had cheated, nobody would have cared past five minutes.

            I feel like everybody gets bogged down in irrelevant details – like bringing up Spygate. That argument happened already, and the Patriots lost. The #1 point to say is that the deflating is – at worst – a spitball, or a bent stick. Fine the organization $50K and move on. Who cares? THAT is how the media has lost their mind, in giving this meaningless act of gamesmanship a gravity it didn’t deserve, and the NFL can’t control their own message because they’re a joke. To me, that’s the problem.

          3. Watching Bill’s press conference – he basically says “deflation” is a natural process – I buy it.

            I feel like the Pats process affects the air pressure, and over the course of game play will slightly decrease the air pressure. I think that’s believable.

            I can accept that normal game play will cause this – now that I’ve heard a cleater explanation of HOW that might occur and WHAT would cause it.

          4. No surprise that the biggest douche in the room at that presser was Little Berty Breer, who then Tweeted out that all BB did was “create plausible deniability”. No Breer, you agenda-driven little turd: He owned you media morons, he FINALLY spat in Goodell’s face over Spygate, and he, ever so slightly, hinted that the NFL should “look into other things” about the incident (wink, wink….like maybe the Ravens and Colts colluded on this just to create a huge distraction, out of spite, for one of the two Super Bowl participants?). It never ceases to amaze me that a smarmy little hack like Breer actually got a high-paying national media gig.

          5. Right on Tony! I’ll never forget Bert’s comment about “Brass Tax.” What an idiot, he is the next Peter King.

          6. Actually, I think I was wrong about Breer being AT the press conference. I thought at first that he was the DB who brought up Spygate and kept pushing Belichick about it, but after re-watching the presser, it didn’t sound like Breer’s voice and the idiot who asked the Spygate questions hasn’t yet been ID’d. Still, that doesn’t change the fact the Florio, King and Breer—the Three Stooges of NFL-related media—are still trying, in ways both subtle and overt, to indict BB. Brady, or both over this non-issue. King was getting hammered by Pats fans on Twitter, so he made an obnoxious posted “to the 6 New England states” about how he’s just doing his job and “covering the ongoing investigation.” Right, I guess he was also doing his job when he took to Twitter almost immediately after the press conference and began questioning why, if BB was telling the truth, the Colts’ balls were still regulation after being tested. Um…maybe because Indy prepares their footballs differently? Maybe they rub them more? Maybe they inflate them in a different environment? Or maybe the Pats had the ball for MOST of the first half and, therefore, the Pats’ balls were subject to more wear and tear during the first half than Indy’s. A good reporter would look into this stuff. That Starbuck’s-swilling mouthpiece for the NFL higher-ups is too fat and lazy to do that, obviously.

          7. Ha – exactly. Maybe the Colts lost 45-7 because they don’t have the same attention to detail with the footballs that the Patriots do.

          8. Or maybe the balls weren’t tested pregame and Indys were over inflated to begin with. Or maybe the story that Indys balls didn’t flucuate was flat out false.

          9. Exactly. Your last point, in particular, is quite valid, because I don’t believe (correct me if I’m wrong) the NFL’s statement on Friday indicated at all that Indy’s footballs had not lost at least some air by halftime–they could have lost some air and still been up to legal spec’s because of how they were prepared before the game. In fact, I’m not even sure if the NFL’s statement even mentioned Indy’s footballs, or if it just said that “some” of the balls were underinflated at halftime (the 11 of 12 thing Mortensen put out there still, as far as I know, has not been corroborated by the league). It’s funny to me that even Jay Bilas, the former Duke basketball player and now college basketball analyst, chimed in on Twitter yesterday and basically repeated the same accusation that King made: the Colts footballs were OK at halftime so why did their footballs “defy the law of physics”. Then he went on to dig at Belichick with a “were these magic footballs; did you get them from the same place where Jack got his beanstalk?” My Cousin Vinny reference. Of course, I believe Jay Bilas is also an ESPN employee, so I guess if you work in Bristol and even if you don’t cover football, the company line is the Patriots are guilty until proven innocent, and even then, we still don’t believe anything they say. Got it. If this things ends up turning out well for the Pats, they should inform the league that they are boycotting ESPN until the CEO of the company issues a very public apology for his employees’ reprehensible behavior this week—he should also apologize for 2007-2008, when their it-was-not-spying-gate coverage was also beyond ludicrous (but I won’t hold my breath on that one).

          10. I am with you. No way espn changes their ways. They will always stick with what works until advertising dollars drop. I have mostly ignored the four letter network for most of the last seven years. I sometimes hit that channel to try to catch a highlight and have been mostly disappointed that I have to wait quite a while for the talking heads to reach their word quota. With that said I have hit the four letter network up this week but only because it has been such a train wreck. It is downright hilarious. For example, BB drops science on everyone and makes great points and challenges those to test for themself. Immediately after espn has someone from the university of Illinois on the phone who explains that BB is right. 15 hours later they bring on Bill Nye who says basically nothing except it doesn’t make sense and go Seahawks. Next I see espn headlines stating Bill Nye debunks BB. What isn’t funny is this could appear to those of average intelligence and higher as satire is taken as absolute fact by those who wait for others to tell them what to think which includes many members of the media that we complain about here.

        1. I really did not mean to imply you were dumb. You are not the first person to make the argument you appeared to be making and I thought it was a moronic argument so I wrote. I promise I generally enjoy your posts and think highly of your opinion in most cases. It was that specific argument I had an issue with. The rest we agree it appears.

          1. I agree that because I’m so strident it SEEMS like I’m blaming Kraft – I’m not.

            I’m blaming the media for absolving Kraft (the boss) for the actions of an employee – of course I agree that Kraft isn’t personally responsible. But the media (like Borges) blames the guy he hates while acting like Kraft is totally blameless.

            It just doesn’t work like that – and frankly, that IS evidence of an agenda by the media. Which I’m sure we agree on.

            I think the problem with many comments (mine, yours, everyone’s) is we are SO invested that we’re not reading deep enough into the comments to see what’s being said…and of course we’re to blame for not being clear enough in our meaning, or overly strident, which is another reason this entire issue has spiraled so much out of control.

            I blame the NFL – they are absolutely a rotten, incompetent cartel.

    2. Kraft is guilty of being Goodell’s biggest champion, which has led to two botched “scandal” investigations that have sullied the Patriots’ reputation.

      1. It’s actually YAARM, but we keep forgetting the extra “A”.

        ‘You are ABSOLUTELY right, Mike.’

  29. I know that Florio has it out for the Patriots, but a tweet by PFT seriously annoyed me today. It was some straight-up Orwellian nonsnse. Here’s the post:

    @ProFootballTalk: Belichick will now use cheating accusations to “manipulate minds” of his players, source says wp.me/p14QSB-9H5u

    Now — for any other coach this is what’s called “motivation.” But because Belichick is a nefarious, evil scientist – part Mr. Wizard, part Dr. Wily – he is MANIPULATING HIS PLAYERS. *Evil cackle*

    I know I shouldn’t get so annoyed by this clickbait bullcrap, but it’s just lazy, exploitative wordplay.

    1. While the media plays hop scotch Bill plays three dimensional chess. Waited for most of the media to be off being piss ants to flight attendants. Just to annoy them some more and having the presser today when he knew on Tuesday that he would have it today.

      The real middle finger would be if all the players gave lynch answers to questions. That’s great. Awesome… thank you… good game… etc etc etc

    2. I enjoy Curran, as I think many do around here. He got a bit bonkers earlier in the week suggesting Belichick could be getting canned, and then was lit up by Billy during the presser this afternoon.

      Even after taking that off the chin he wrote a pretty enjoyable article about Gangster Belichick giving no s**ts today.

      He’s a nice panacea for all the VERY LOUD and SERIOUSLY INDIGNANT voices we are subjected to in the media.

      1. curran did not suggest bb should be fired. All he said was heads should roll if someone on the patriots did intentionally deflate the footballs. He reiterated this on the dale and Holley show on Friday.

  30. The Pats are going to f’n crush the Seahawks. The ultimate “revenge against every moron in the media and every moron fan” game that has ever been played.

    There, I said it.

    1. And then my fantasy, after that happens, is for BB and TB to both retire without explanation, giving the ultimate finger to the all the morons in the media and fandom. Heads would explode.

  31. Now that Bill Belichick has effectively ended deflategate (unless some smoking gun appears with a video of Tom Brady laughing menacingly, while he directs Snidely Whiplash and Snerdly to deflate the footballs) I think it is important to discuss how poorly both the local and national media handled this brouhaha. Mike Reiss who along with Tom Curran is the best beat writer covering the Patriots and might be the best covering any team posted this to his personal blog (not Reiss Pieces):

    http://www.mikereiss.net/media-coverage-on-underinflated-footballs/

    In it he criticizes himself for feeding the frenzy and then he takes responsibility for writing headlines that might not have been fair. I doubt we will see this type of introspection from any other media member.

    Specific to deflategate I think the local media have completely let down the Patriots. It is going to be clear after the NFL investigation that the Patriots did nothing wrong. NOTHING. That leads to Mike Reiss Sunday notes column and note 4a:

    4a. The media firestorm from the Patriots’ underinflated footballs, fueled by the NFL’s aggressive investigation, sparks many questions about the pregame process in which officials test footballs: Who is there? Is air pressure in each ball documented? How are they tested? I’d like to hear more from NFL referees on this part of the process.

    I listened to Mike Felger say on the flagship station of the Patriots broadcast on Friday afternoon when asked directly by a caller that he “does not believe Tom Brady or Bill Belichick”. The logical conclusion of his position was the Patriots are guilty. He is not the only media member who has expressed that sentiment. They all were not willing (and this is important) to examine or consider that NFL officials blew this whole situation. The media let down the Patriots organization by running a 6 day witch hunt rather than sanely and rationally ending this by laughing with Tom Brady monday morning as this absolutely should never have become a story. Tony Mazzeroti’s position that the coach knows all and therefore he had to have had a hand in this (a position held by the vast majority of the national media) showed an unwillingness to properly vet this story.

    If I am Bob Kraft this morning, I would seriously consider buying my own radio station this morning. Felger and his ilk can call Patriots Weekly sunshine.com and they can joke about media members wearing patriots footies but as far as I can tell it was only Mike Reiss and Tom Curran (after he stepped off the Bill Belichick could be fired precipice…that was not cool) who kept their heads in this whole mess while they focused on the real story…one that has not been told yet. What does the NFL think it knows? How under inflated was each football? How did Walt Anderson and his crew actual measure each ball before the game? Were the measurements recorded? Is their tape of the initial recordings? Was the measurements at half time taken using the exact same conditions? Were the Indy ball measurements recorded pre game and at half? Were those measurements taken under the same conditions? Did they show any drop (not necessarily the same at the Patriots drop but any at all? Does the NFL take into account time of possession when doing these calculations as the Patriots used their balls much more than the Colts did theirs in the first half? Lastly, and this is the biggest one that should have been answered first and used to put this whole nightmare to bed Did this contribute anything to the outcome of the game…if it did not then why has the NFL allowed this story to linger a week during the lead up to its showcase event? If you want to argue this is an integrity of the game issue…then the last question is what responsibility does the NFL have to maintaining the integrity of the game by making sure one of its franchises is not put in the position the Patriots find themselves?

    The story is not the Patriots…it never was. It is how poorly the NFL has handled this situation. Bill Belichick in his impromptu news conference Saturday bluntly put the onus where it belongs. Privately we can only hope Bob Kraft has put the league on notice that if they access any penalty on the Pats he is suing them. This non story has cost the Patriots a fortune in reputation value. That translates into real dollars in lost merchandise or viewership dollars. Someone in the NFL front office should be fired for letting the Patriots twist in the wind. They should be fired for wasting money…hiring an outside law firm for god’s sake. They should be fired for deliberately allowing the value of a prized franchise be deflated all because of innuendo, rumor and a faulty system for handling the footballs. Maybe now the media, both local and national will focus on the real story.

    1. They all were not willing (and this is important) to examine or consider that NFL officials blew this whole situation.

      I love that Felger, and the rest of the media, who just a few months ago believed NOTHING the NFL says due to the Rice + Mueller sham investigation now all of a sudden believe the NFL.

      That’s the biggest thing for me.

      So, the NFL is credible when they got a point you believe in but not when it’s something you don’t want to believe in? Bias? Isn’t that called an agenda?

      If we were to do a case study after this, I think it’d show that the media, all of them, are horrible at covering anything. Getting units of measurement wrong, wrong verbiage when reporting facts or assumption of them.

  32. So, now we’re down to “Bill Nye” vs. “BB”

    @AlbertBreet And we have seven days to go … RT @mikefreemanNFL Bill Nye just debunked Belichick…a sentence I’d thought I’d never write.

    What didn’t make sense? If he didn’t make sense, post a rebuttal where he went wrong “Mr. Science Guy.” I’m willing to bet he has a 1080p setup on a tripod at home, and if he doesn’t could easily borrow one.

    1. Bill Nye is a mechanical engineer, not a physicist. Does he have a working knowledge of physics? Probably. Does he have the level of knowledge of say, the Carnegie-Mellon prof. who has been backing the “weather conditions and other atmospheric factors” theory from just about Day 1? Very, very unlikely. And, let’s face it, Nye is more entertainer than scientist at this point in his life. But, of course, the haters will cling to anything they can until this thing is resolved, one way or the other. Unreal. And Breer needs to have his smarmy little mouth slapped one of these days, he really does. I truly loathe him.

      1. I have to do a mea culpa here. It appears Nye’s “debunking” of BB may have been mostly schtick with some small amount of “scientific red meat” thrown out to the mediots. He apparently ended his TV segment by saying “Go Seahawks” (he lived in Seattle for a long time), and the most damning thing he may have said was “I don’t think you can take air out of a ball without using a needle.” Didn’t read or watch the stuff, because I’m fed up with this witch hunt, but for Freeman and other media morons to put a headline out saying Nye “debunked” BB is, once again, just misleading, dishonest b.s. I know he’s not a popular guy, but I have to give Bobby Knight a shout out for one thing he said during his controversial career: journalist is (maybe) one level above prostitute in the career-choice hierarchy (my apologies if I posted that quote somewhere else recently; I think I did).

  33. Hey guys, did they play the Super Bowl yet? Anybody know who was or is even in the game? When it is? Where it is? I heard it was on Wednesday and it was between the Tiger Woods and San Antonio 49er-Bears. And that Sunday, February 1st, was really going to be 15 hours of Deflated Ball talk, live from Arizona.

    1. Back track my ass. Once a DB always a DB . That web site has gone down hill the past two years I’m on it less and less. In my opinion they are slow at updating . Just saying

  34. Curran is now reporting that some guy in the NFL office who worked for the Jets for something like 20 years may have been behind this. I guess he was with the Jets up until fairly recently and he “had suspicions” about the Patriots footballs as much as a year ago. Moreover, the Revis tampering charges may have aggravated him to the point of instigating this (along with Irsay). If this is true, then the owners have to clean house down on Park Avenue. Are you serious? Some guy with Jets ties and hatred for the Pats decides to try and cause this kind of distraction during the Super Bowl bye week? Unlike the media, I’ll wait for the final details about this mess, but if ANY of this is true, it’s time to clean house, starting with that incompetent jackass sitting in the commissioner’s chair. Oh, and the Pats should go crazy, pull a Sol Rosenberg, and “sue everybody for punitive damages.” Time to declare war on the league and the media: they’ve been at war with them for years and I think they’re just now starting to realize it.

  35. I started to see a trend yesterday. All the participating ****media patriots haters who called for the patriots to dq’ed from SB or calling for TB’s suspension and BB’s firing started tweeting that they wanted to get to football or retweeting Don Banks article that called for people to calm down. I found it ironic considering all these people started this controversy. I got the feeling the backtrack was in the works because these weasels started seeing the writing on the wall that the Patriots did nothing wrong. This trend picked up post BB press conference. Next week is all about the media using Mark Mcguires defense, “I am not here to talk about the past”. I hope we the fans do not let them off the hook. ****i exclude the idiots at espn. They are still trying to push the agenda even now.

    1. I will be making sure @mortreport and @SI_peterking never forget their foolishness. We have been abused by those who are supposed to report fairly and honestly.

  36. “How could XXX republican candidate possibly have won this election, I don’t know anybody that voted from him/her.” LOL…that’s called Pauline Kael Syndrome and it’s a pandemic in most American newsrooms–has been for about 40 or 50 years, actually.

  37. https://twitter.com/TonyMassarotti/status/558005021795954688
    Tony Massarotti
    @TonyMassarotti
    Jan 21

    Once again, this is how the rest of the country undoubtedly feels about this… http://sports.cbslocal.com/2015/01/21/deflate-gate-bill-belichick-cheat-super-bowl/ … @CBSLocalSports @985thesportshub

    ******
    No, Tony Mediot, it isn’t.

    http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/polls

    What’s your take on 11 of 12 Patriots footballs being underinflated during New England’s 45-7 win over the Indianapolis Colts?

    49% Patriots’ success is tainted

    51% Not a big deal

    (Total votes: 1,189,207)

    Look at the map, folks, it’s not just New Englanders that think the latest tabloid controversy for fake sports fans and retarded mediots is “not a big deal.”

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